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Wanda Jackson: Let's Have A Party - Rock N' Roll Latitude

Wanda Jackson
Label:  Specials   Catalog #: 2742033/34  
Number of Discs: 2 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Wanda Lavonne Jackson was born on the 20th of October, 1937 in Maud, Oklahoma. She was the only child of Nellie and Tom Jackson. Nellie, who came from Franklin County in Tennessee, was very religious, attended church regularly, and worked as a 'housewife' at the time. Tom, a farm hand, loved country music and occasionally dabbled in it himself. He played the piano and sometimes the guitar or the violin with a semi-professional group which performed some weekends in bars around the town. The serious depression which hit Oklahoma after the big drought soon deprived Tom Jackson of all his resources. In 1941, he moved to California and set up home with his wife and child in Los Angeles, where he worked as a 'barber' for three months. But Tom Read more Jackson was far from being the only migrant to the city of angels during the nation-wide recession. He therefore moved his little family to Bakersfield. This destination was not chosen by chance, as Bakersfield was considered one of the main American strongholds of country music (after Nashville and the state of Texas). People even talked of the 'Bakersfield Sound', whose standard bearers for the fifties and sixties were Buck Owens, Wynn Stewart and Merle Haggard. Tom went back to hard labour in the fields and then accepted any kind of work he could get his hands on. Wanda was a happy child who sang at church with great enthusiasm and proved to have a real predisposition for all kinds of artistic activities from a very young age. Mr. and Mrs. Jackson paid particular attention to their daughter's talent for singing and did everything they could to encourage and stimulate her. Tom let her enjoy his exhaustive collection of Jimmy Rogers records, of whom he was a great fan. The couple never missed a chance to see the country music concerts organized around the region with their offspring. As early as the age of 5, Wanda Jackson took an interest in the work of Hank Thompson, Bob Wills, Spade Cooley and Tex Williams. She confided later that her first real idol was Rose Maddox, singer and violinist with the quintet The Maddox Brothers & Rose. Wanda envied her stage presence as well as her imaginative and colourful costumes. And Rose Maddox made her realize what her true vocation was: to be a singer up in the limelight. Her parents did everything they could to help her make her 'little girl's dream' come true. In 1943, Tom bought her a guitar, taught her the basics of playing it, helped her put together a repertory of songs, sometimes accompanied her on the violin, and suggested she learn how to play the piano and read music. The first song she knew by heart was Hank Williams' Lovesick Blues, one of the biggest hits of the 1948/1949 season. Wanda immediately fell in love with the guitar and stayed almost exclusively faithful to it. From then on, her love for music really took over. Read less

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